West Indies captain Jason Holder said he was waiting for an opportunity to return to the Indian Premier League (IPL) and he is glad that the call from Sunrisers Hyderabad came even though it came in the form of injury replacement after Australian all-rounder Mitchell Marsh who was ruled out of the tournament after only one game for the former champions.
Jason Holder flew in as a replacement and got his first opportunity at IPL 2020 on Thursday when Sunrisers took on Rajasthan Royals in a crunch encounter. Holder made an immediate impact by picking up 3 crucial wickets in their 8-wicket win.
Holder came into the playing XI following an injury to Kane Williamson. Holder’s all-round skills added the much-needed solidity to the Sunrisers’s side who lacked firepower in the pace bowling department as well as the middle-order. Holder was not needed to bat as Sunrisers gunned down a 155-run chase with 11 balls and 8 wickets to spare, thanks to a fine 140-run unbeaten stand between Manish Pandey and Vijay Shankar.
However, Holder, as expected, did the damage with the ball, picking up the wickets of Sanju Samson, Steve Smith and Riyan Parag apart from running out Robin Uthappa, who was looking in good touch.
Holder said he had wanted to get back to the IPL for quite some time and he made a ‘tough’ decision as he had left a vacation mid-way to join the IPL. Notably, Holder last played in the IPL in 2016.
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“Yeah, it’s pleasing. Obviously, it had been a while since I played in the IPL. I wanted to get back to IPl for a long time. It was really good to get an opportunity here even though it was through an injury. Nevertheless, I am grateful for the opportunity. Glad I came in, I was able to make an impact on the game,” Holder told Vijay Shankar during an interaction for IPL.
“I left vacation to come here and play, left the missus. It was hard enough making the decision to come over and play. I am glad I did and making use of the opportunity is a pleasing feeling.”
Holder was part of the West Indies squad that played a historic Test series in England, marking the resumption of international cricket following the enforced break due to the novel coronavirus pandemic. Holder had spoken about the difficulties of being in a bio-bubble for months but when the SRH call came, the West Indies star was ready to lap up the opportunity.
Holder had not managed more than 2 wickets overall in the three previous stints in the IPL but the West Indies all-rounder picked up 3 wickets in his very first match for SRH in IPL 2020. Having won a crunch game against RR by a big margin, SRH will be confident as their play-offs hopes have been revived.